August 4, 2010

dutch baby

A while back I clipped a Dutch Baby recipe from an article in Gourmet, intending to make it asap. Then somehow it ended up filed away in my recipe folder for too long.... you know how that goes. Finally, in search of breakfast inspitation a few weeks ago, I began leafing through my recipes one evening, and there it was! Breakfast solved.

Have you ever made one of these Dutch Babies? If not, please put it on your must-make-very-soon-for-breakfast list! Ridiculously easy, absolutely delicious, and not hard on the eyes, either. A sort of popover-pancake hybrid, it's light and eggy, with wonderfully crisp golden edges, and a moist and slightly dense center. Plus, it's really fun to watch puffing up in the oven (and particularly mesmerizing when you're just a few sips into the first cup of coffe and not quite awake).

On DB attempt #1, I followed the orignal Lemon Sugar Dutch Baby recipe from Gourmet, which includes lemon zest in the batter and lemon juice and lemon sugar sprinkled on top. It's quite yummy. The following Sunday's attempt #2, however, we liked even better: sans lemon, and with amped-up amounts of vanilla and warming spices (cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg). I also substituted plain yogurt for milk, and a 50/50 combination of spelt and buckwheat flours for the original recipe's all-purpose white (I always seem to prefer the flavor and texture of whole grain flours -- moist and more substantial-tasting). And we drizzled maple syrup on top. Spectacular.

The batter can be whisked by hand or, even easier, whipped up in the blender. You could even make the batter the night before serving, refrigerate it overnight, then bring to room temp and bake the next morning. An effortless breakfast! If you don't have a cast iron skillet, a pyrex or ceramic pie plate can be used instead -- though in it seems to puff up more dramatically in cast iron. For a fruity DB, arrange slices of fresh peaches or apples, or berries, in the bottom of the pan before pouring in the batter.

Buckwheat and Spelt Dutch Baby, Adapted from Gourmet
Serves 4 reasonable people, or 2 greedy ones

3 large eggs, at room temp for 30 minutes
2/3 cup plain yogurt, room temp (if using very thick yogurt such as Greek, measure out a bit less than 2/3 cup and then add water or milk to up to the 2/3 c mark)
1/3 cup spelt flour
1/3 cup buckwheat flour
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
pinch of salt
1/2 stick butter (4 Tbsp)

For serving: powdered sugar, maple syrup, jam or preserves, fresh fruit...vanilla sugar or cinnamon sugar would also be great.

Equip: 9 or 10-inch cast-iron pan

1. Place cast-iron pan in oven on the middle rack. Heat to 450F.
2. Whip eggs in a blender until pale and frothy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add all other ingredients (except butter), and blend until very smooth, about 2 minutes more. The batter will be about the consistency of heavy cream, similar to a crepe batter.
3. Remove hot pan from oven and add butter. When butter is melted, carefully pour in the batter and return the pan to the oven.
4. Bake for 18 to 25 minutes, until puffed and golden. Serve right away, plain or with toppings of your choice. It will deflate as it cools.


  1. I love prepping the night before, making the next morning almost effortless. I just melt thinking about how tasty this must have been, both times!

  2. I've never even heard of a Dutch Baby before, but I'm completely excited to try it!

  3. The Dutch Baby is news to me---what a dish! Can't wait to give this a go. Both your versions sounds so good. Glad to see your posts again. Love those eggplants in your banner!

  4. Hi Tracy - I always love a breakfast that can be prepped the night before and cooked in the AM while still half asleep.

    Lady Grey - Hope you try it! I like these better than pancakes or waffles for breakfast.

    Nancy - thanks! It's good to be back. I love those little Japanese eggplants. All they need is a quick sear in a cast-iron pan, they come out so tender and sweet.

  5. I've never heard of this before Nancy, but it sounds and looks so good. I love popovers and I imagine they are somewhat similar.

  6. Ray - if you like popovers you will love the Dutch baby! Time to get a cast iron pan -- all the better to sear some teeny green peppers, too.

  7. I live on the South side of The Netherlands & I have never heard from a Dutch Baby before,..Thanks for introducing it to me!!

    The dish looks quite tasty & so special too!

  8. Hi Sophie! From what I've heard, the Dutch Baby originated in the US -- Seattle, WA, claims it as their own, in fact. Funny indeed that it's called Dutch, since it actually seems to have been based on a German-style pancake (I suppose they should have called it Deutsche?) :)